Abdul Wasae Abdul Wasae - 1 year ago 46
Android Question

Android In-app product that is not consumable, but several can be purchased

I am having confusion choosing a suitable product type of a commodity in my utility android application.

My application is of a kind where the user is benefitted through the number of 'slots' that they own. Think of it like the length of a ListView. My free application will feature a maximum length of that ListView upto 5. But if a user needs more List Items, they can buy subsequent List Item slots. The user should be able to buy as many as they like at 0.50$ each.

The problem is that, my in-app product neither comes under the definition of a 'managed product' alone, nor does it come under the definition of a 'consumable product' alone. I need the 'slot' product able to be purchased as many times as the user likes. But at same time, i also want Google Play to keep track of the ownership of the amount of slots per user.

As the documentation (and several tutorials out there) suggest:

  • If i want Google Play to store the purchase information for each item on a per-user basis, i will have to declare my product as a managed (non-consumable) product.

  • If i want my product able to be purchased many times, i would have to implement consumption for items that can be purchased multiple times.

The predicament is that i want both the features.

One bad solution is that I feature several slot products as unique products (alpha slot, beta slot, ... and so on), and then treat them as the same thing. However, i'd like to know of a solution that's more correct and sensible.

Another solution could be to make use of a separate cloud service to keep track of the number of slots bought by users, but i don't want that. That would be overkill. Also, i'd like to make use of the 'local caching' feature of Google Play Store.

Answer Source

I asked Google Play Developer Support if there were any way that Google Play Store could keep count of consumable in-app products. Turns out, at the moment, it is not possible.

Here is the actual reply (Nov 3, 2016):

I wanted to know whether Play Store also keeps record of the count of a CONSUMABLE in-app item that a user has bought even after the user uninstalls and then reinstalls the app? In short, after user reinstalls, is there any way of knowing as to how many of a single in-app item has the user ever bought?


Thanks for contacting Google Play Developer Support.

I checked into it and the Play Developer Console doesn’t currently support tracking every individual users every IAP purchase for developers to see. Luckily, we place a high value on developer feedback, and I’ll be sure to pass along your specific feedback to our product team. We’re continually adding new features and functionality, so please stay tuned.

You can always check the Android Developers Blog for any new features and updates: http://android-developers.blogspot.com/